Pre-Mattel Dolls vs. Mattel Dolls


On the right is a pre-mattel version of the American Girl Doll, Samantha, and on the left is the Mattel version. Do you see the differences? I can point all of them out.

1. The cheeks on the Mattel version look different. They droop down, while the Pre-Mattel is up straight.

2. The hair is darker on the Mattel version. It looks more straggly.

3. The eyes are darker on the Mattel doll.

4. The Mattel doll’s skin is lighter than the Pre-Mattel.


Now, we’ll see the Josefina Pre-Mattel and Mattel dolls.


1. The Pre-Mattel on the right has lighter eyes than the doll on the left.

2. The skintone on the Mattel version of the doll is more pink, just like she got sunburnt!

3. It looks like the Pre-Mattel doll has much thicker hair.

4. The Pre-Mattel doll has leather type tyes on the moccasins, while the Mattel doll has a shoestring type tye on the moccasins.


Most of you probably have Pre-Mattel dolls, while just some of you have Mattel. Either one is great, as long as you have the doll!

Thank you for this interesting idea.


August 7, 2007. Comparison.


  1. Jennifer replied:

    you forgot the big difference with the Josefina dolls: the pre-Mattel doll has a gold necklace, while the Mattel doll does not.

  2. americangirldcentral replied:

    I can name some things too, I have a pre-mattel samantha doll…
    1.Pre Mattel doll has softer, thicker brown eylashes while Mattel(newer) has straight, stiff,black ones.
    2. Pre Mattel doll has a longer shaped face, Mattel has a rounder face
    3.Most newer Mattel dolls are marked AMERICAN GIRL LLC or PLEASEANT COMPANY. All old dolls are stamped PLEASEANT COMPANY and occasionally with a date.

  3. pat trojonawski replied:

    What does the letter c mean inside the circle on the dolls neck. Thank you.

  4. cs replied:

    This response is a little late in coming, so you may alrdy know the answer. But in case you don’t it’s just a standard manufacturing symbol stating that the design of the item has been copyrighted. In other words, it’s illegal to make and market a copy of the item without permission from the creator.

    In this case, it’s unlikely anyone would ever get that kind of permission — but authors, publishers, etc. are often more lenient and will allow reprints or excerpts in specific situations (e.g., educational purpsoes).

  5. Stephanie replied:

    I was given a pre mattel josephina doll for a garage sale. What is she worth? Doll is used and in good condition, but only has her skirt and blouse, no other accessories, except a pleasant co doll hospital band. My daughter has a mattel version of Josephina and is in great condition and obvious differences are noted between the two dolls. I am trying to sell the pre mattel josephina doll to raise money for a woman with breast cancer. I don’t want to give her away.

  6. civicprincess123 replied:

    NOT that i have a expeirence if what she would be worth but i think 70-80$ YEA

  7. Lauriec replied:

    The PC Samanthas are so much prettier than the Mattel versions.

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